tv NOW With Alex Wagner MSNBC February 15, 2013 9:00am-10:00am PST
but what you might not expect, is you can get all this with a prepaid card. spends like cash. feels like membership. just when you thought it couldn't get possibly any more dysfunctional, any more partisan, any more comedically ridiculous, it has. it's friday, february 15th, and this is "now." joining me today senior national correspondent for bloomberg business week josh green, nbc news political analyst, former pennsylvania g and current governor of "now," ed rendell, time executive editor radika jones, and politico senior white
house reporter glen thrush. senate democrats fell just one republican vote short of ending the 39-day trial of chuck hagel. four republicans, senators thad cochran, susan collins, mike johanns and lisa murkowski broke ranks to join the democrats to vote for ending the debate over hagel and hold a vote on his confirmation. that left harry reid with just 59 of the 60 votes needed to move on to confirmation marking the first ever successful filibuster of a cabinet nominee. because of the coming senate recess, the next chance to confirm hagel will be the last week of february. in the meantime, republicans continued to find new reasons to justify they are obstruction. senator john mccain's latest gripe is personal. >> there's a lot of ill will towards senator hagel because when he was republican, he attacked president bush mercilessly. at one point said he was the worst president since herbert
hoover, said that the surge was the worst blunder since the vietnam war, which is nonsense. and was very amti his own party and his own people. people don't forget that. >> people also don't forget that years after hagel's republican herecy, john mccane said this of the man in 2006. i would be honored to have chuck with me in any capacity. he'd make a great secretary of state. people have also not forgotten that this filibuster has nothing to do with chuck hagel and everything to do with a republican vendetta against the white house. >> all three of us said we're not going to go forward on the hagel nomination until they testify about what happened in benghazi. >> and while republicans now say this latest delay will give them enough time to decide about hagel, they continue to leave the door open to unspecified shan an begans. >> i'm confident in the next week, unless there's some explosive bombshell that i can't
quite get my hands around that i intend to vote for cloture. >> as the antics continue on capitol hill, president obama has not forgotten what the hagel saga would seem to ignore. we are at war, and we need a secretary of defense. >> it's just unfortunate that this kind of politics intrudes at a time when i'm still presiding over a war in afghanistan, and i need a secretary of defense who is coordinating with our allies to make sure that our troops are getting the kind of strategy and mission that they deserve. >> republicans once standard bearers on defense now seem content to be the party of obstruction and vendettas. governor rendell, i think this is a low point, i mean, a real significant low point in temz of how our government works, but you and i were speaking before the break, and you said this crisis probably could have been averted. >> sure. i think the dysfunctionality is in part to blame for, you democrats. we had a chance to make serious
reform on the filibuster process, and we took a walk on it. we passed some things that didn't amount to anything. we had a real chance to put a crimp into the dysfunctionalty, and we didn't do it, but i also say, alex, i have no clue what the republican party is doing about anything. about guns, about this. they seem to be hurdling into disaster -- into greater disaster than they are now. what do they think they're gaining in the eyes of the american people by doing this? >> josh, there are obviously the optics of democrats not being able to get the 60 vote threshold, but at the end of the day i think this looks very bad for the gop. republicans deny they were filibustering say they would prolong debate. holding up the cabinet pick that should have been.
>> they did meet the threshold, which traditionally has been 51 votes, so these are extraordinary measures that republicans are imposing with the filibuster. to the larger point, yeah, the republican party just lost an election by a fairly substantial margin, because the american people decided it was too strident, too oppositional, unwilling to cooperate. here they are launching a valentine's day filibuster against a republican nominee whose very identity shows that obama is willing to kind of reach out to the other party. it's puzzling, and it isn't for reasons of wanting to stop his nomination because they've gone ahead and said, oh, you know, in ten days we'll vote for them and pass them anyways. it's mindless. >> as with all things in congress and in washington, glen, it is a psycho-drama at its root, right? you have -- >> a psycho, right? let's distill this to three players, and let's start with john mccain, right, who is -- >> let's start with him. >> have as lated between trying
to uphold the sort of seriousness, the legacy of the upper chamber. i will play a little back and forth regarding ted cruz's assertion that maybe chuck hagel was in the pocket of the iranian oorz possibly the north koreans and john mccain's response to that. let's take a listen. >> i want to put on the record that this senator feels like that senator cruz has gone over the line he basically has impugned the patriotism of the mom knee. >> senator hagel is an honorable man. he has served his country, and no one on this committee in any time should impugn his character or his integrity. >> you can almost see the angel sitting on one shoulder and the little devil with the pitchfork sitting on the other. then he goes ahead and votes against the cloture vote.
>> a lot of republican senators really hate ted cruz. >> as one of them -- well, i will spare the expletive-laced tyrade that one senior senate republican aide gave me yesterday, but let's just say that the nicest word that they said about him was that he was a jerk, and we have a story today on our site that talks about that. >> ted cruz, pump your brakes basically. >> or something else. but in general i want to just differ with the panel a little bit. i don't think this is that big a deal on the hagel thing. >> why? >> because i think essentially the fall-out for this is going to be leon panetta having to spend an extra ten days away from his vineyard in sonoma. >> i believe it's a wall nut grove. >> i'm sorry. walnuts stwloosh that in and of itself could be catastrophic for leon panetta. >> i guess i disagree on the thesis of our open here. once this happens, radika, and i would love to get your thoughts, these are these threshold that is no one can ever turn back from.
now it is going to be par for the course for sort of the party in minority to hold up cabinet picks. i mean, nothing -- it was one thing when it was judicial picks. it was another thing when it was low level staff picks. now it's the cabinet -- the cabinet is not immune from political football, basically. >> it did occur to me given the news of the week that maybe it would be better if ten people went into a room, sent up white smoke and suddenly we had a new secretary because part of the damage is watching this theater, which as you have said earlier, the american public is actually not that interested in. i mean, these aren't hillary clinton hearings. you know, i think everybody realizes, both sides, that the hagel hearings did not go well. he did not come off well. this was never going to be an elgabt process, but it is now very inelgapt. >> decidedly inelegant. at its root, it comes back to something very basic. if i was a wiser and smarter telephone host, i would have brought this up earlier. senator lee bright is the problem for chuck hagel. he is the guy that is maybe
going to give lindsey graham a primary chal epg, governor rendell. lindsay graham has been having meetings with the tea partiers, the club for growth. he is intent on solidifying the political base because he is worried about the next election, and if lindsey graham wasn't so worried, maybe there would be more bipartisanship in the upper chamber, and maybe all these legislative -- this kabuk eh dance would never happen brsh. >> that's a hard thinking to do anything about. we had a chance to do something about a procedure that is dysfunctional and basically flawed, and we democrats took a pass on it. i go back to that. we're responsible for this. as to glen's point, glen, i brae agree with you. this was an isolated incident. it's not that big a deal. it's playing out at the same time when you have the head of the nra absolutely delivering one of the most racial overtoned, insane -- >> screeds, i have seen. not one republican standing up and saying this guy is nuts. we don't agree with anything he
wrote. we're going to make our decision based on what's right for the american people, but this guy is nuts, and we just -- >> i told you -- i they this is totally playing into the hands in the terms of the democrats. i don't think there are a lot of tears shed in the white house that harry reid decided push this yesterday. you know, to make the case. on the grand point, in addition to sort of the tea party challenge that he faces, in a perverse way graham grandstanding on this issue helps the administration in terms of the immigration reform. this is lindsey's whole pattern. he will do one thing where he links arms with them and then another thing where he punches him in the face. he has to do that for south carolina. >> you don't think this is a bellweather for further obstruction, or further having to cater to the right? you think this will be met with a more progressive stance? >> how much lower can -- how much lower can -- >> that's the question. >> who in their right mind would bet that we can't go any lower given the sort of -- >> yet we answered the limbo dance that never ends. i mean, like how much lower can you sink? >> limbaugh. >> i will tell you what i think
the acid test is going to be. the acid test is will the republicans filibuster and in the house will they allow a vote on gun control because let me tell you, i thought the president was brilliant except for when he said it's okay to vote no on gun control. i thought he was brilliant because if they vote, my suburban republicans -- i have four suburban republican congressmen, they cannot vote against limiting high capacity megazeenz. they cannot vote against assault rifles. they cannot vote against background checks. if they vote, if they vote, but if they don't let it go to a vote in the house, i mean, that's as low as it can get on an issue that seminole in light of what's happened in newtown. we can sync lower. it's unbelievable to say that. >> i think it's -- i'm not a betting man, but if i was, i would not bet against it getting lower. wait. did that make any sense? i would not -- i am not a man, and i don't bet, but if i did, there we go, i would bet that we might get lower. i mean, it is -- there is
never -- the basement we don't even know what it looks like. we have to go to break, but after we come back, nobody handles a deadline like congress. with the clock ticking down to the sequester, democrats offer a plan while republicans do not. we'll discuss the ambivalence next on "now." [ woman ] when you own your own business, it's a challenge to balance work and family. ♪ that's why i love adt. i can see what's happening at my business from anywhere. [ male announcer ] now manage and help protect your small business remotely
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now just five, count them, five calendar days to get something done to avert the $85 billion in set scheduled cuts this year. despite warnings of 750,000 potential job losses and concerns about the nation's military readiness, the mood on capitol hill is anything but urgent. exhibit a, john boehner. the speaker's first term strategy consisted of passing bills that would never pass the senate and then chastizing the senate for not passing them. he has officially abdicated responsibility. >> this was the president's idea. his party needs to follow through on their plans to replace it. >> boehner 2.0 is the -- >> if he is serious about enacting his agenda, i think it must start with the part of the congress that his party controls, the united states senate. you know, what can he get passed in the united states senate? >> what accounts for the change? "it hasn't been real productive the last two years, and frankly,
every time i've gotten into one of these high-profile negotiations, it's my rearend that got burnt." perhaps less concerned about their rearends, senate democrats yesterday got the ball rolling on a sequester alternative proposing $110 billion in alternative savings this year. half or $54 billion would come from imposing the buffett rule on healthy americans by enforcing a minimum effective tax rate on all incomes over $1 million. the other $55 billion, a combination of spending cuts split evenly between the department of defense and farm subsidies. republicans have rejected tax increases out of hand, but the sequester saga has revealed a split within the gop between deficit hawks and defense hawks. it is also made for some strange bedfellows, as progressive democrats line up with conservative tea partiers keen on cutting defense. >> not only should the sequester stand. >> i so badly want to cut all of
the fat out of the pentagon that i'm willing to do this. we are never again going to get to cut the pentagon back. the pentagon hasn't had any significant cuts for 30 years. >> josh green, is that the political equivalent of a liger, a lion and tiger combined to make an animal we have never seen before. rand paul and howard dean agreeing that the sequester should go through because, hey, defense -- >> hadn't occurred to me in quite those terms, but, yes, i suppose it could be a liger. >> there have always been contingent of liberal democrats that have wanted to go after the pentagon because its budget has grown enormously since 9/11. what you haven't had is a kind of republican analog. there have been a few people here, walter jones, congressman in north carolina, ron paul, in fact, was a big advocate of this, but only in the last couple of years, and really only in the last 18 months since the sequester cuts have loomed have you seen this tension between small government anti-tax republicans and pro-defense republicans. it's really a sort of tug-of-war between their two interests. traditionally the anti-tax group
wins that argument, but now i think we're seeing real pushback from defense republicans and democrats. >> governor, where do you think moderate, you know -- howard dean is pushing for these defense cuts because he makes the case, and we did a little research. you look at u.s. military spending from 1988 to 2011, and it has gone up in a big way. you look at the percentage of the u.s. military spending compared to the rest of the world. it is, you know, in the last 20 years, we've seen record spending on defense. now, that is due in some part to the fact that we had a war in iraq. we have ongoing military engagement in afghanistan. that costs money, but where do you think democrats need to be. >> on this issue of sequester? >> where democrats have to be is in intelligent reduction in defense spending. the sequester is not intelligent reduction. one of the benefits, i think, of chuck hagel as secretary of defense is he does know and i think will have the willingness
to go in there and find the places that are real fat. find the weapons systems that don't work. find the pad in the things, find the excessive spending on things that we don't need, and cut those rather than cutting troop deployments or things like that. >> i think that argument is valid up to a point. the same thing you can say about domestic spending. there's a certain amount of fat that can be cut. you are talking about a major realignment of forces. they're talking about moving away frour reentation and looking at middle asia. sooner or later you're going to be talking about real cuts, and you are going to see one of the reasons why haling was chosen by obama is because they wanted a republican messenger for that particular message. >> radik arks the democrats have come forward with a plan that the white house has given its tacit approval to. the question is do they need to do any more than that? this is in large part a question of optics. do the american people, again -- you talked about hagel. we're looking at sequesters.
do they blame -- if democrats have a plan, do republicans get the blame if they don't propose anything? >> i mean, i think increasingly that is the case. you know, the american people want bipart sfwlanship. they want the country to move forward. they are sick of dysfunction. it's very simple in those terms, and they want to see the republicans moving forward. i mean, one thing that joe cline wrote in our pages this week that he was disappointed by in obama's state of the union speech he felt that the president still isn't asking for enough sacrifice. you can interpret the proposed tax increased tax revenue as that call for sacrifice. you know, if people get on board with that, then i think, yeah, the republicans would suffer. >> let's talk a little bit, josh, there is nothing more kind of awkward than quoting someone to their own face, but i do it a lot on this show, and you have a really interesting -- is it a full story, or is it a post? i just -- >> it's sort of a web story. >> it's a liger. >> yeah. >> it's why democrats should
fear sequester cuts. in the great intel available at bloomberg gov or bgov, you say that you basically make the point that democrat are going to be the ones that feel the pain for these defense cuts. a new study from bloomberg gov showed that democratic congressional districts will be hit harder by the military cuts than republican ones and that eight of the top ten districts that will experience the deepest cuts are represented by democrats. among the top districts military spending in those represented by democrats averaged $893 million this year versus $573 million in those represented by republicans. do democrats not know that? >> i don't think they do. this runs completely counter to conventional wisdom wrosh it was bloomberg government's defense analyst rob levinson who broke out these numbers, but the conventional wisdom up until now has been that democrats are worried about the social spending side of the sequester cuts, and republicans are worried about the defense side. what this study showed is the democrats actually had a lot on the line, democratic congressmen
do, in the potential sequester cuts, which ought to be leveraged to try to protect some of those districts, although this hasn't gotten a lot of attention. i think as we move forward and these cuts kick in, and most people do think that the sequester cuts are going to take effect, i think you'll start to see some of the information bubble up as the two parties finally get together and try to negotiate some kind of more reasonable series of cuts that won't have quite the economic damage. >> that seems like a pretty massive oversight. if you don't as a democrat realize that these defense cuts are happening in your own backyard, governor. we have five days to go on this. >> no question. i think probably nobody ever thought that the sequester would actually -- >> happen sfwloosh right. >> that's number one. i do agree with what you said about republicans getting the majority of the blame, but eventually the blame is going to come back to us as well because the american people are eventually going to get sick and tired of kicking the can down the road. what we're doing, let's assume the senate plan is adopted by the house, which i don't think
it will happen, but let's assume it is. what we've done is we've kicked the can down the road. we've done nothing to deal with the debt problem in a serious way. if we've done anything to deal with the debt prog problem, it's in the first ten years. the second ten years the debt explodes the way we're going. it explodes. it will destroy the economic framework of this country. eventually the people are going to wise up and say, okay, democrats, do something real. republicans, let's do something real. something real, if we're going to get it done, is going to require paying on our side. so far we've gotten away without any pain on our side. >> we like taking. there are a series of sort of hostage negotiations that are upcoming even after this. i mean, we have the continuing resolution, glen, where you could maybe theoretically tackle the debt, tackle the deficit, make a grand bargain, although that increasingly -- none of this looks really all that likely at this point, does it? >> i think the governor is totally right. ultimately obama is going to have to make some deal on
entitlements or, you know, his legacy is going to be completely tarnished, and the question i think is, you know, even something as modest as chain cpi is now evoking tremendous opposition among house democrats. you have a letter today with 100 or more house democrats saying they don't want to go for obama's floated proposal on chain cpi, a relatively modest reduction in entitlements. >> let me jump in and disagree for a minute because i think that at least with the sequester part of what governor rendell said, if those cuts take effect this year, the economists i talked to say that will cost somewhere between 750,000 jobs and a half point of gdp at a time when the economy is shrinking. putting those cuts off for a year, kicking the can down the road for another year or so is probably the best obama can hope for in terms of protecting the government. he is not going to get a lot of the new proomz he talked about in the safety yawn address, but it is feasible to think that the worst of these cuts could be staved off to protect -- >> that's the paul krugman's
argument. >> it's obama's argument. >> obama during his state of the union speech, obama has a real philosophical difference with the republicans about deficit reduction. he thinks consumption and growth are the way to grow the economy out of the deficit. he has not made that argument because it isn't palettable politically. >> in fairness, if you look at even some of the serious deficit hawks, i suspect you align with bowl simpson. >> they say that what we really need is short-term stimulus, long-term deficit reduction. there isn't as much of a differential here as it's made out to be. >> i am co-chair with judd gregg to fick the debt, and you're right. what we're not grasping is this should be significant short-term investment and long-term deficit reduction. deficit reduction that is good for the second ten years or maybe the third ten years, and the only way to do that, the only way to do that is serious entitlement reform. >> but the sequester cuts by this year hit the economy this
year. >> what i'm saying is they'll kick the can down the road and avoid the sequester. that's my prediction. >> you think they're going to avoid a sequester? >> not with the senate plan because i can't see the republicans voting for that. >> tax increases are -- >> but there will be something framed to avoid the sequester. >> you need a liger plan. >> the liger plan. >> kick the can for about a block. >> i call to the bullpen. all right. listen, something happened. i was trying read the hot note. i'll read it live. the house has passed an adjournment resolution along party lines that would put the congress in recess until monday and house democrats are using the vote to, guess what, criticize republicans for leaving down with the sequester deadline rapidly approaching. so partisan game continues as we near sequester semester. coming up, president obama campaigns for an overhaul of preschool education, but while statistics are on his side, surprise, some conservatives are not. class is in session. ♪
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make sure you're ready. at devry.edu. ♪ president obama's state of the union proposal to expand high quality preschool was an encouraging sign for education reformers. >> study after study shows the sooner a child begins learning the better he or she does down the road. but today fewer than three in ten 4-year-olds are enrolled in a high quality preschool program. so tonight i propose working with states to make high quality preschool available to every single child in america. >> yesterday the president laid out some of the specifics. we will weigh the pros and cons when chris hayes joins us for "up now." that's next. ♪ you know my heart burns for you... ♪
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playing well with others is a trait we could use in washington. maybe we need to bring the teachers up. yeah. every fwhuonce in a whale have quiet time, time-out. >> accustomed to dealing with the short attention spans of his fellow colleagues in washington, yesterday president obama met with the classroom of 4-year-olds in decatur, georgia, before outlining his ambitious proposal for universal preschool and early childhood education. >> this works. you know it works. if you are looking for a good bang for your educational buck, this is it.
let's make sure none of our kids start out the race of life already a step behind. >> the federal state partnership would guarantee preschool access to 4-year-old from lower and middle income families. nearly half hour of the nation's preschoolers would qualify. steven barnett, director of the national snult for early education institute at rut derz says the biggest proposed change in american education since brown versus the board of education. early education advocates point to success stories in states including alabama and oklahoma and to studies showing reduced crime rates, lower drop-out rates, and higher incomes among those who attend preschool. critics point to the did hes couraging results of programs already in place like head start, and although the white house yet -- has yet to put a price tag on the program, estimates put the cost of the plan between $3 billion and $20 billion a year which will no doubt be a point of contention when president obama brings a plan back to washington. just add it to the list. here is msnbc's chris hayes, host of "up" for a little
segment we like to call "up now." >> it's going to get tiresome. >> it's an amazing pun. you take the two names of the show and put it together. >> like the liger. >> so, chris, you know, i will say this. who knows if any of this is going to get done, but i think it is fantastic that we are having a conversation about the minimum wage, the importance of early education and what the reality here -- listen to this. listen to this, chris. at risk children who don't have an early education that's high quality are 25% more likely to drop out of school and 60% more likely to not attend college and 70% more likely to get arrested for a violent crime. >> yeah. the data on this is pretty robust. it's obviously -- it ended up in the university of chicago getting the nobel prize. it's been -- it's almost like a cliche universal pre-k like worthwhile initiative. it's -- liberals are all like of
course we have political -- make this a priority and, b, point of the fact that in red states, right, this is something that republicans have been able to get behind for a few reasons. one, it fits idealogically with the republican and conservative approach to inequality. the most sort of heavy-handed way to deal with inequality, if you are a kwvrn, is some kind of redistribution, higher marginal tax rates, reducing the minimum wage. this idea of a level playing field fits much more smoothly with idealogical conservatism self-conception with how to deal with inequality, and, b, it is not that expensive. i just want -- >> bang for your buck. bang for your become. >> center for american progress estimated the cost of universal pre-k, and they came up with $100 billion over ten years. $10 billion a year. the tax extenders, just the tax extenders we passed in this last budget alone were $68 billion. that's just the variety of tax breaks that no one even debated and just got passed basically like, oh, of course. obviously. >> tax breaks --
>> so it's that $680 million every ten years. >> no. >> that's a one-year cost. >> so $680 million over ten years. as opposed to -- >> or to angle tax breaks for oil and gas are $3 billion to $4 billion a year. david brooks, that bastion of liberal thought, he says this is rude to say. he writes, "this is rude to say, but here's what this is about. e-mail yonz of parents don't have the means or the skill or in some cases the interest in building their children's future. early childhood education is about building structures so both parents and children learn practical life skills. it's about getting kids from disorganized homes into rooms with kids from organized homes so good habits will rub off. it's about instilling achievement values where they are at." this is where why you are on the panel. the idea is that, you know, to chris's point, this is something that conservatives can support for a variety of reasons, and would see -- education traditionally is -- >> what other proposal that obama has put out that is morrow
bustly implemented in oklahoma and georgia. that is a big deal. the other thing i would like to point out is chicks dig it. >> you're talking specifics, wow. >> no, this is an issue that goes extraordinarily well. they poll extraordinarily well with women, including a more -- defense and minimum wage and wage issues. these are issues that play very, very well with women voters. and, further, sort of put the republicans in the corner on that. >> let me move on and sort of speak on behalf of my readers at "businessweek." there is a very strong business case to be made for why this is a good thing. if you look at states like alabama, it was the business community that is interested in pushing this because they needed an kaelted work force, and they understand that it is important and helpful to do it at that early stage, has the best outcomes to lead their transeggs. >> unless we think that everyone is going to just get around the fire and pass this. i mean, tlaz long history of
conservative opposition to this. boehner already said no. i think it's important here that we think of the axises of the public and private sector. this is about another fight that happens just as often, which is what is the -- the very thing david brooks said, which is taking your kids out of the household and having the state educate them has been an enemy of conservatives and conservative thinking for a very long time and will face tremendous resistance by the evangelical base of the republican party. >> it's one of the things that squelched the original universal attempt, mondale's push in 1971. >> when we talk about the economics of this, i do want to call everyone's attention to james heckman that did a cost benefit analysis, and it shows that if you spend $18,000 a year per student for pre-k, the annualized rate of return is between 7% and 10%. the stock market has grown at an average of 5.8%.
can you not make the economic argument? >> there are some cavats that are out there that have shown that the affect dissipates as children move through elementary school, and the really critical part here is that the teachers and this was part of obama's proposal. that the teachers at least have a bachelors degree and that they're compensated adequately because that is a huge factor in this. this is not a cheap plan. >> a big take-away is the quality does matter, right? we know -- one of the things we know, and i thn right now as a parent, is that preschool is just under supplied by the market. the private sector actually just doesn't produce enough of it for the people that want it. forget about getting people that are outside of it. in new york city with neighborhoods with a lot of money, there are people on waiting lists. >> for, like -- for people who are wealthy. >> as to the argument that it fades as the kids -- you have a couple of quality pre-k education with full day kindergarten. full day kindergarten is enormously important. some of those things the state could pick up. when i became governor that was
my frontal boundary one and you put one-third of the billion dollars into pre-k and full day, and by the team i left in my eighth year pennsylvania kids finished first in the nation on the nate test in eighth grade with readers wrshgz eighth grade. we started out in year one, and our eighth graders that went through pre-k and full day kindergarten, and for us with all of the english as second language cities that we have for us to be number one in reading was extraordinary, and it came from an investment. that investment has to go all wait through, and you're right, quality of teachers. we had a program called keystone stars that upped the salaries. you can't have different salaries for pre-k teachers -- >> than you do for regular school teachers. chris, before we go, i thought that, you know, we talk a lot about the american dream and mobility in this country and that's so much of the republican argument that's predicate odd this bootstrap mentality. the pew statistics on mobility from the charitable trust shows that 42% of american children who are born to parents on the
bottom rungs of the income ladder will stay there. which i think is the most damning case. >> i mean, we talk about inequality a lot, but the more damning thing about american society right now from the perspective of the sort of -- from conservative perspective is the decline in mobility, and the best we can know mobility has been declining over time, and it's also very low in the oecb countries. the class bound rigid hierarchies of europe -- >> 18th or 19th. >> this is something that i think there's an emerging conversation about in universal pre-k seepz like a way of doing that. it's necessary, but not sufficient, but i'm glad to see the step. >> i'm now wondering whether i went to pre-k, and i think i'm getting quietly angry at my parents because i don't think i did. i'll have to research that. >> my parents -- my mom, to her credit -- i was. as a 3-year-old. my mom -- this is a perfect example. my mom and my parents, to their great credit, organized a coop pre-k in the neighborhood in the bronx i grew up in because one did not exist. >> case in point. >> every child should be this
successful. >> don't forget to catch chris on "up" tomorrow and every weekend at 8:00 a.m. we will have more on this very interesting subject of discussion. chris hayes, thank you, as always, my friend. >> coming up, president obama awards a protester edges medal to the heroes the newtown tragedy and nra doubles down on its more guns for everyone strategy. we'll compare and contrast just ahead. [ coughs ]
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their fraudulent intentions. it's not about keeping kids safe at school. that wasn't even mentioned in the president's speech. >> in the last hour the president honored a group of women who sacrificed their lives for the children of sandy hook elementary school. we will give mr. lapierre a reality check coming up next. hey, it's me, progressive insurance. you know, from our 4,000 television commercials. yep, there i am with flo. hoo-hoo! watch it! [chuckles] anyhoo, 3 million people switched to me last year, saving an average of $475. [sigh] it feels good to help people save... with great discounts like safe driver, multicar, and multipolicy. so call me today. you'll be glad you did. cannonbox! [splash!]
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actions of extraordinary americans. >> that was president obama and a white house ceremony earlier this morning honoring the six teachers and administrators all female who lost their lives while trying to protect children at sandy hook elementary school on december 14th of last year. the six victims were among 18 people awarded the presidential citizens medal, which is the nation's second highest civilian honor. governor rendell, you have been outspoken in your belief that we need to have stronger gun safety laws. i think, you know, we see wayne lapierre on one hand giving his tone deaf rebuttal and then what is an emotional top ebbing for the president and a tribute to those people who lost their lives in the name of protecting the nation's children. >> and it helps. as crazy as wayne lapierre is, he needs to stay crazy because it helps the goal. >> we talk about whether or not this time it's different. certainly we're seeing more wayne lapierre and more crazy
from wayne lawpierre and more -- i also think the tenor in the national conversation has changed in terms of gun safety. >> i think you're -- partly what you are seeing is the contrast. it struck me watching the state of the union that president obama's language on guns and particularly on newtown has been some of the most eloquent and moving language in his whole presidency, and that's saying a lot for someone like obama. i think he has been touched by this, and i think whatever happens in terms of legislature, he wants to be on the record as saying these things aloud as often as he can and letting people understand, letting liberals understand in particular, that he feels strongly. >> and letting parents understand. i thought that was the most moving part, obviously in the state of the union when he points to the victims and said they deserve a vote. i mean, it's not even really political at that point. it's just give voice to this cause. >> he has called that the worst day of his presidency, and you listen to a lot of political rhetoric fly back and forth. i'm starting to think that on some level this was transformative for him personally, and i don't think he
is kidding. one other point is the state of the union i agree with you, i thought the newtown stuff was obviously the emotional high point of it, and he also had a new speechwriter, cody keen, who has taken over as the chief speech writer and cody was the one who wrote his tucson speech. i think it's clear we're seeing a different approach by the president to some of these speeches. >> transformative was correct. after tucson and aurora, he gave great speeches, but didn't do anything. >> and didn't address -- after gabby giffords, defendant's exhibit take it up in that state of union. >> but, sadly, there was an element of politics in that state of the union speech and there had to be because obama can't force a vote. you had him imploring the congress. >> imploring really harry reid as much as it is anybody else. bring it to the floor for a vote. >> especially house republicans. i think that's testament to the fact that he can't do this on his own regardless of whether or not he has been -- >> that's hugely important. we're saying back home and for -- we're challenging our
republican congress, will you sign a discharge petition to let high capacity magazine be voted on? sign a discharge petition. even if your leadership -- >> the local level may be where we see the most traction for this issue. all right. we have to leave it there. thank you to josh, governor rendell, radika, and glen. i'll see you monday, when i am joined by our panel. log on to facebook.com/now with alex for a detailed tutorial on ligers. "andrea mitchell reports" is next. plus the perfecting color of a bb cream equal? introducing the newest beauty trend. total effects cc cream c for color. c for correction. [ female announcer ] fight 7 signs of aging flawlessly. cc what's possible. tens of thousands of dollars in hidden fees on their 401(k)s?! go to e-trade and roll over your old 401(k)s to a new e-trade retirement account. none of them charge annual fees and all of them offer low cost investments. e-trade. less for us. more for you.